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Berkshire, Columbia county arts organizations launch regional pay equity initiative

A collaboration of cultural nonprofits from Berkshire and Columbia counties has launched the Columbia/Berkshire Counties Compensation Equity Project.

The group is seeking input on how chronic low pay for nonprofit arts professionals perpetuates inequities, contributes to personal and family instability, and is a barrier for participation in the regional arts and culture sector.

To ensure that all voices are heard, the organizations are conducting a brief survey for current and former entry- and mid-level regional arts and culture workers. The cohort hopes to amplify local voices reflecting on how employment works — or doesn’t work — for cultural employees in the Berkshire/Columbia County region. The survey is open through Dec. 5 at bit.ly/Equitysurvey2022.

The results of the survey will be combined with the results of a focus group series and a compensation benchmarking analysis to create a set of sector recommendations and commitments to increase equity. The announcement will take place early next year.

Berkshire County members of the equity project include the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, Community Access to the Arts, WAM Theatre, Berkshire Art Center and Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival.

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